Exploring the Evolution of Art Sales: Can Premium Art Thrive Online or Does it Require the Gallery Experience?


After several visits to Frieze London this year, I was blown away by the experience. The sheer volume and variety of art in all different forms took my breath away. I was captured by the entirety of my experience, from the beautiful invites, the setting in London’s iconic Regent’s Park, the crowd, to give you an idea: Damien Hirst and Princess Eugenie spotted amongst other famous talent, and the walls awash with talent. It got me thinking about art sales online: how do you recreate such intensity of experience online? How do you enable your clients to immerse themselves in your art experience when not at a show? What tools are out there to help you do that, and can it be done?

The world of art has traditionally relied on physical galleries and art events to create an immersive experience for collectors and art enthusiasts. Walking through the galleries, observing the intricate brushstrokes, and engaging with the artistic atmosphere provides a profound connection with the artwork. Frieze London, with its grandeur and abundant artistic expression, exemplifies this immersive art experience.

Online art platforms have evolved to offer more than just static images of art pieces. They employ various techniques to enhance the engagement and immersion of buyers in the digital realm. Here are some examples:

High-Quality Digital Representations: Online galleries now provide high-resolution images that capture the intricate details and textures of each artwork. This allows viewers to zoom in, closely inspect the brushwork or materiality, and appreciate the finer nuances of the piece.

Virtual Exhibitions: Some online platforms have started to create virtual exhibition spaces where visitors can explore 3D renderings of gallery rooms. These virtual environments simulate the feeling of being in a physical gallery, allowing users to navigate between artworks, observe scale, and even interact with the space.

Artist Interviews and Stories: To provide a deeper context and connection with the artwork, online platforms often feature artist interviews, stories, and background information. This helps buyers understand the inspiration, techniques, and artistic journey behind each piece, fostering a more immersive and personal experience.

Augmented Reality (AR): AR technology can be leveraged to bring artworks to life in clients’ own surroundings. By using a smartphone or tablet, buyers can virtually place artworks on their walls, allowing them to visualize how the art will integrate into their living spaces. This provides a sense of scale and helps buyers make more informed decisions.

Curated Viewing Rooms: Online galleries curate specialized viewing rooms that mimic the curation process found in physical exhibitions. These curated spaces create a more focused and tailored art experience for buyers, enabling them to explore artworks within a specific theme or context.

20 Years of Frieze London

Frieze London, one of the world’s most influential contemporary art fairs, celebrated its 20th anniversary last week. Established in 2003 by founders Sharp and Slotover, the fair has become a key event in the art world calendar, showcasing the best and most innovative contemporary art from around the globe.


While these tools and approaches certainly expand the possibilities of online art sales, it is important to recognize that there is a unique magic in physically experiencing art in a gallery setting. The ambiance, the interaction with other art enthusiasts, and the overall sensory engagement are elements that have yet to be fully replicated online.

While it may be challenging to recreate the exact intensity of an art show online, there are innovative tools and approaches available that aim to bring the immersive art experience closer to online buyers. By continuously pushing the boundaries of digital technologies and incorporating elements of curation, storytelling, and virtual environments, the art world is finding new ways to engage and captivate art enthusiasts in the online space. 

Online platforms will never replace the magic of in-person art experiences, but they can certainly enhance access and provide avenues for collectors to immerse themselves in the art world from wherever they may be.

At Treacle Media, we understand the importance of embracing a multi-channel customer journey in today’s digital landscape. The majority of buyers now engage with brands online before making in-person visits, and often, they will do both before making a purchase. That’s why having a strong online presence has become vital for the success of any business.

We believe in the power of creative storytelling and the ability of digital platforms to bring your brand to life. Our team at Treacle Media is here to support you in mapping out and optimizing your customer journey, ensuring a seamless and engaging experience for your target audience across multiple channels.

From designing captivating websites and engaging social media content to crafting immersive virtual experiences and innovative online showcases, we have the expertise to help you stand out in the virtual space.

Don’t miss the opportunity to connect with your customers in meaningful ways online. Let us be your partner in harnessing the potential of the digital era and bringing your creative work to life in the virtual space.

Contact Treacle Media today to explore how we can collaborate and transform your brand’s online presence into a captivating and immersive experience. Together, let’s create extraordinary digital touchpoints that leave a lasting impression on your customers.


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